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Certificate of Occupation: The big worry for the people occupying McPherson Square has been that a sudden police raid–like the ones in New York, Oakland, UC-Davis, and, oh, just about every other Occupy encampment—would clear them out. This weekend’s demolition notwithstanding, they shouldn’t have to worry about that: A judge has ruled that authorities need to give 24 hours notice before evicting the protest. Good news for anyone who doesn’t like the smell of tear gas or pepper spray. +2
Ethics R Us: Every member of the D.C. Council voted today to approve new ethics legislation–even the ones who have caught the FBI’s fancy recently (like Harry Thomas Jr.). The bill would dial back, but not eliminate, the slushy constituent service funds councilmembers enjoy now; it would also set up a new body to enforce ethics complaints, apparently because the council thinks the current Board of Elections and Ethics isn’t up to par. Anyone expecting the bill to immediately improve the conduct of the D.C. government, however, should probably take a look at a nice bridge we have for sale a bit to the north. -1
Turning Japanese: Tomorrow is a date that will live in infamy—especially if you attend Sidwell Friends and don’t like edamame. The private school’s lunch selection for Dec. 7 features the soy bean snacks, chicken teriyaki, something called “Oriental noodle salad,” and other Asian-inspired dishes; its menu notes prominently that Dec. 7 is Pearl Harbor Day. School officials say it’s coincidental; the food contractor chose the menu items, and the printing contractor automatically noted the date. With that mystery solved, now maybe someone can figure out why they still think it’s okay to refer to anything as “Oriental.” -1
Fail To The Drug Tests: Life as a professional football player isn’t that easy. Sure, you get paid a lot of money to play sports, but you have a high risk of concussions and other cataclysmic injuries—and you can’t just smoke weed whenever you want to. That’s the lesson from the suspension the NFL handed out today to Trent Williams and Fred Davis of the Washington Redskins for failing three drug tests; they’ll miss four games, starting Sunday, ending their seasons. Which is to say, don’t bet on the team winning out. -2
Yesterday’s Needle rating: 59 Today’s score: -2 Today’s Needle rating: 57